Believe it or not, I have heard people (mainly guys) use 1 Corinthians 9:27 as a means to justify idolizing their bodies. This verse has a long history of misinterpretation in terms of punishing one’s own body as a means of spiritual discipline. Paul’s language, however, is governed both by the athletic metaphor of the previous two verses and by the physical demands of his apostolic work (4:9, 11–13; 2 Cor. 4:8–12; 6:3–10; 11:23–12:10; 1 Thess. 2:1–2, 9; 3:7–8). Just as an athlete goes through physical training that is sometimes uncomfortable in order to attain the goal of victory, so Paul endures physical and emotional hardship, and gives up his right to material support, for the gospel’s advancement. (See 1 Cor. 9:12 and 2 Cor. 6:1–10.) Disqualified (Gk. adokimos, “not approved, not standing the test”) in this context means “disqualified from receiving rewards” (see 1 Cor. 9:24–26).
Paul didn’t write this scripture for guys to justify workout out 6 hours a day, getting a 8-pack and showing off around girls. No, just the opposite. We must beat our body and our fleshly desires and keep them in check. When our lives revolve around out cut we are, we became slaves to our bodies.